Ongoing fluctuations in coolant temperature readout - BMW R1200GS Forum : R1200 GS Forums
 
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-Oct-2019, 12:03 PM (710) Thread Starter
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Ongoing fluctuations in coolant temperature readout

Hi all,

just a recheck with people to see if they've encountered this anomaly in the readout of their coolant temperature, to see if anyone else has experienced it,

I was having a problem in which the temp readout on my 2019 1250 GSA would, during rides at constant speed ( ~ 110 km/h, 70 ish mph) in mid-range ambient temps. (~ 12 - 15C, or 50s to 60s F) fluctuate between 78 and 98 C (~ 173 to 208 F) rather wildly - that is it would climb from mid-range to the max of 97 or 98C, in jumps of 3 to 5C, then drop right away in similar large steps down to 78C, and then shortly aftert it would repeat this,

interestingly, it doesn't do this during stop-and-go heavy traffic and lots of intersections, here the coolant temp just climbs slowly as expected to ~ 100C (212F) and then the fan comes on and it goes down, then repeats as long as I'm going slowly. So that behaviour makes sense and seems appropriate.

So this significant fluctuation in larger steps just seems to occur when moving quickly when there's lots of air movement over the radiators.

I have now taken the bike to the dealer who thought it odd, and replaced the coolant sensor and did an "Adaptive Value Reset" to force the computer to relearn ambient and moving data,

however I now have to report to them (and you lot!) that this hasn't corrected the fluctuations, they still occur,

so I am wondering if folks here can rationalise this fairly cyclic fluctuation in terms of (normal?) opening/closing of the thermostat -controlled flow of coolant to/from the radiator where there's lots of cooling air available? Does this up/down temp readout make sense to anyone?

am I just seeing the sensitive readout of a normal cooling system experiencing good cooling airflow over the radiator? some of the jumps in temp (and similarly, drops) are quite large - 5 - 6 degrees in one step - i.e., it hops up or down from something like 83 to 89 in one go, not more gradually . . .

Given the season here in Canada right now, I can't report on a hwy ride at 30 - 35C (86-95F) say, to see what happens there, but my wife and I will be riding down hopefully to Arizona next week so maybe that will be a bit warmer than here!

I get no apparent effects on the engine itself, and no warning lights or screens, all I see apparently wrong or at least "odd" is the rate and step-size of coolant temp fluctuation,

thoughts?

cheers, thanks folks for reading this, otherwise I'm not really getting anywhere,

despite my need to understand this, I may wind up having to ignore it . . . it's just that temp changes like this make me worry about longterm effects on the engine, but then I suppose that if the temps aren't out of range, do I care?

Last edited by pmariana; 08-Oct-2019 at 12:05 PM (712).
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-Oct-2019, 04:26 AM (393)
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Originally Posted by pmariana View Post
Hi all,

just a recheck with people to see if they've encountered this anomaly in the readout of their coolant temperature, to see if anyone else has experienced it,

I was having a problem in which the temp readout on my 2019 1250 GSA would, during rides at constant speed ( ~ 110 km/h, 70 ish mph) in mid-range ambient temps. (~ 12 - 15C, or 50s to 60s F) fluctuate between 78 and 98 C (~ 173 to 208 F) rather wildly - that is it would climb from mid-range to the max of 97 or 98C, in jumps of 3 to 5C, then drop right away in similar large steps down to 78C, and then shortly aftert it would repeat this,

interestingly, it doesn't do this during stop-and-go heavy traffic and lots of intersections, here the coolant temp just climbs slowly as expected to ~ 100C (212F) and then the fan comes on and it goes down, then repeats as long as I'm going slowly. So that behaviour makes sense and seems appropriate.

So this significant fluctuation in larger steps just seems to occur when moving quickly when there's lots of air movement over the radiators.

I have now taken the bike to the dealer who thought it odd, and replaced the coolant sensor and did an "Adaptive Value Reset" to force the computer to relearn ambient and moving data,

however I now have to report to them (and you lot!) that this hasn't corrected the fluctuations, they still occur,

so I am wondering if folks here can rationalise this fairly cyclic fluctuation in terms of (normal?) opening/closing of the thermostat -controlled flow of coolant to/from the radiator where there's lots of cooling air available? Does this up/down temp readout make sense to anyone?

am I just seeing the sensitive readout of a normal cooling system experiencing good cooling airflow over the radiator? some of the jumps in temp (and similarly, drops) are quite large - 5 - 6 degrees in one step - i.e., it hops up or down from something like 83 to 89 in one go, not more gradually . . .

Given the season here in Canada right now, I can't report on a hwy ride at 30 - 35C (86-95F) say, to see what happens there, but my wife and I will be riding down hopefully to Arizona next week so maybe that will be a bit warmer than here!

I get no apparent effects on the engine itself, and no warning lights or screens, all I see apparently wrong or at least "odd" is the rate and step-size of coolant temp fluctuation,

thoughts?

cheers, thanks folks for reading this, otherwise I'm not really getting anywhere,

despite my need to understand this, I may wind up having to ignore it . . . it's just that temp changes like this make me worry about longterm effects on the engine, but then I suppose that if the temps aren't out of range, do I care?
I've noticed my 19 GSA temp display seems to react much more quickly than the K1600 it replaced. On the highway with 60's F ambient any slight grade or speed increase causes a jump that drops quickly and when not moving in warmer temperatures the it responds to the cooling fan quicker. Guessing that either the sensor or the display readout is faster updating than average since the cooling system seems to handle things like stop and go traffic when in the 90's F easily.

-Dave

2019 R1250GSA
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-Oct-2019, 03:27 PM (852)
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In short, yes my varies too. While just cruising on a flat road at a constant speed.

I checked it on the way to work today in the 40's F and it varied from low 170's to low 190's.

Then coming home around 70F it did the same thing.

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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-Oct-2019, 12:15 PM (718) Thread Starter
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thanks to patsrides and wilsoda, interested to hear your experiences,

it's what I'm missing in all of this, the dealer doesn't seem to know much of what's going on, I'm trying to figure out if it's just a sensitive sensor (!) with maybe no damping, or something odd with the thermostat . . . I certainly understand temp fluctuations, and it does seem that the cooling system is quite capable, that's for sure,

just wish that the coolant temp didn't get quite as high as 97 - 98C (208F) before dropping, but then, it doesn't go above 97/98C and it always does drop down (rather quickly!) to 79-80C (176F), and maybe that's telling me something - since it's always fluctuating between the same low and high numbers, suggests that it's a preset and intentional system setting, does it?

just not sure why the system allows the engine/coolant to get up near to fan-temperature before (fan goes on in traffic always at 100C/212F) . . .

is the system opening the thermostat to the radiators and allowing really cool liquid to come into the hotter engine, is that what's going on? I'd have thought that maybe you'd want a fluctuation between a narrower range, . . .

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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-Oct-2019, 05:16 PM (928)
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Originally Posted by pmariana View Post
thanks to patsrides and wilsoda, interested to hear your experiences,

it's what I'm missing in all of this, the dealer doesn't seem to know much of what's going on, I'm trying to figure out if it's just a sensitive sensor (!) with maybe no damping, or something odd with the thermostat . . . I certainly understand temp fluctuations, and it does seem that the cooling system is quite capable, that's for sure,

just wish that the coolant temp didn't get quite as high as 97 - 98C (208F) before dropping, but then, it doesn't go above 97/98C and it always does drop down (rather quickly!) to 79-80C (176F), and maybe that's telling me something - since it's always fluctuating between the same low and high numbers, suggests that it's a preset and intentional system setting, does it?

just not sure why the system allows the engine/coolant to get up near to fan-temperature before (fan goes on in traffic always at 100C/212F) . . .

is the system opening the thermostat to the radiators and allowing really cool liquid to come into the hotter engine, is that what's going on? I'd have thought that maybe you'd want a fluctuation between a narrower range, . . .

I have read some about car manufacturers cycling the air/fuel ratio up and down to manipulate the temperatures/NOx emissions that could be part of what we are seeing, but that is a wild guess for whatever that is worth.

2019 R1250GSA
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-Oct-2019, 07:09 PM (006)
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I donít pay much attention to mine, but mine typically runs constantly at ~185 F in 80-100 degrees. When the temp shows ~195, the fan kicks on (slow traffic and 1st gear off road). Only on a extremely hot day and in traffic or stopped would it ever get to 210. Today at 41 degrees (for 200 miles) it ran at 181. For what it is worth, I got my 1250 in December 2018 and I have 9000 miles on it.

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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old Today, 09:39 AM (610)
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I only have 600 miles on my 1250 but the Temp is always between 172F and 181F, or 79C and 83C. All Fall riding with cooler outside air temps.

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